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The Dancing Man
by [?]

Once there was a Porch Rat, who was also a Parlor Snake and a Hammock Hellion. He worked the popular Free Lunch Routes for thirty years before deciding to hook up and begin paying for his own Food and Drink.

When he started flitting from Bud to Debutante to Ingenue to Fawn to Broiler to Kiddykadee back in 1880, he was a famous Beau with skin- tight Trousers, a white Puff Tie run through a Gold Ring and a Hat lined with Puff Satin, the same as a Child’s Coffin.

In 1890 he was parting his Hair in the Middle, in imitation of a good Bird Dog, and had been promoted to the Veteran Corps of the iron-legged Dancing Men and the insatiable Diners-Out. He would eat on his Friends about six Nights in each Week, and repay them every Christmas by sending a Card showing a Frozen Stream in the Foreground, and Evergeen Trees beyond.

In 1900 he was beginning to sit out some Numbers. Also, when he got into his Evening Togs, his general Contour suggested that possibly he had just swallowed a full-sized Watermelon without slicing it up. But he was still Johnny-answer-the-bell when it came to Dancing Parties.

In 1910 he carried a little Balloon under each Eye and walked as if he had Gravel in his Shoes. He was still trying to be Game, although he had a different kind of Digestive Tablet in each Pocket and would rather tackle Bridge than the Barn Dance.

The Path was becoming Lonely and the whispering Tress seemed tall and forbidding. He decided to whistle for a Companion. The Dear Girls had been dogging him for three Decades and he decided to let one of them have her Wish at last.

He hunted up one aged 24 and broke the Glad News to her and she told him not to rattle his Crutches over the Mosaic Floor as he went out the Front Way.

He is now living at a Club organized as a Home for Men who have Gone Wrong.

When he pushes the Button the Bell Hops match to see who will be Stuck.

MORAL: There is an Age Limit, even for Men.